Protesters spray tourists with water guns in Barcelona, chant ‘tourists go home’

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jul9,2024
Protesters in Barcelona have expressed their desire to rid the city of tourists, using water pistols to spray diners while chanting “Tourists go home.”
The demonstrators say they are unhappy with the number of tourists in the city, which they blame for negatively affecting the cost of living and quality of life for locals.

Nearly 3,000 people joined the protests on the weekend, marching through the city centre with lead demonstrators holding a large banner that read “mass tourism kills the city.”

According to official figures, almost 26 million visitors made an overnight stay in the Barcelona region in 2023, spending €12.75 billion ($20 billion).
“We come here to demonstrate against mass ‘touristification’ here in Barcelona. The last years the city has turned completely for tourists and what we want is a city for citizens and not in service of tourists,” demonstrator Albert Valencia told Reuters.
To combat the “negative effects of mass tourism”, the city council run by the socialist Jaume Collboni announced 10 days ago that it would implement a by 2028 so that the properties can be put back on the market for locals.
The announcement could lead to a legal battle and is opposed by an association of tourist apartment operators who say it will just generate a black market in rental apartments for their clients.
The Barcelona protests come after similar demonstrations in other Spanish tourist hotspots such as Malaga, Palma de Mallorca and the Canary Islands.
The second most visited country after France, Spain received 85 million foreign visitors in 2023, an increase of 18.7 per cent from the previous year, according to the National Statistics Institute.

The most visited region was Catalonia, whose capital is Barcelona, with 18 million, followed by the Balearic Islands (14.4 million) and the Canary Islands (13.9 million).

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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